This was the first faculty search presentation I have attended, and I could feel the anxiety and judgement in the room with so much riding on this lecture. Ben DeMott is one of three candidates for a full-time faculty position in the ceramics department. He outlined his approach to his own art practice as well as numerous artist influences and ways of working. ‘Making as Thinking’ was a central theme, as well as the relationship between ‘Theory and Praxis’.
Ben’s recent work with extruded porcelain is incredibly intricate and he embraces the delicate material’s fragmentation and tendency to slump and morph in the kiln. I was intrigued by the strong relationship between his drawings and sculptures and how the mixture of marks can cohabitate to create highly complicated systems.
Let’s hope Ben is the one chosen after a jam-packed day of intense scrutiny – he’d make a valuable addition to the department.